By Landing Ceesay
The National Election Response Group (NERG) and partners including the Civil Society Coalition on Election (CCE) and the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) reported violation of Election Code of Conduct involving the National Reconciliation Party and National People’s Party (NPP).
“In Latrikunda Sabiji, the National People’s Party (NPP) agent was reported to have attempted to influence voters on queue. At Hagan Street, the NPP Bureau opposite the polling station in Banjul South was open and functional during voting which is in violation of the Election Code of Conduct stating that there should not be any political activity within 100 meters from a polling station.
“In Chamen, Nianija constituency, the National Reconciliation Party (NRP) candidate unlawfully entered the polling station with his vehicle displaying his party emblem and colour which resulted in the temporal closure of the polling station for about 30 minutes. In the end, uniformed security personnel had to escort him out of the premises and restored calm and order,” said Bubacarr Cham, a member of the National Election Response Group.
He added that in the Busumbala constituency; the holes of 2 ballot boxes were blocked by 2 large tokens, one in each drum, which was quickly resolved by the IEC.
Talking about Election Security, Mr. Cham said no major uniformed security incidents were reported.
“There were uniformed security personnel on election duties present at polling stations. There were uniformed security patrols countrywide, and the Police activated an election emergency hotline (117) for the public to report any election related issues. Security personnel conducted themselves professionally. No major uniformed security incidents were reported.
“We commend Gambians for their patriotism and patience throughout the parliamentary election. We applaud the electoral management bodies (EMBs) for their contribution towards the holding of free, fair and peaceful elections. We urge all stakeholders to utilize laid-down procedures to seek redress on any electoral grievance. The ESR will release a comprehensive report at the end of the electoral process,” he said.
Gambians on 9th April, went to the polls to elect their representatives in the 6th Legislative elections under the 1997 Constitution that the National Election Response Group (NERG), and partners including the Civil Society Coalition on Election (CCE) and the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) observed the process with the aim of monitoring, analyzing, and mitigating electoral violence to contribute to a peaceful and credible election.